MP busts the super-injunction and names Ryan Giggs. But is Twitter safe?

I guess it’s one-nil to free speech and the power of the internet, but uncovering an alleged affair at the bottom of the super-injunction vs Twitter court case just makes it seem a bit tawdry.

MP John Hemming used Parliamentary privilege to publicly air the worst-kept secret of recent months – that it was Ryan Giggs who took out a super-injunction to prevent any media outlet commenting on an alleged affair with Imogen Thomas from Big Brother.

Giggs was preparing to sue Twitter for revealing his identity, a move which persuaded the MP to step in. Hemming said that it would not be practical to imprison the 75,000 Twitter users who had named the player.

While the Daily Mail took the opportunity to point out how it tarnished Giggs’ reputation as a family man – others pointed out the social value of the first occasion where Twitter had a role in breaking a super-injunction. That the social network had helped to expose the injunction Trafigura had taken out to smother details of the chemical disaster it caused in rural India.

The Giggs case raises lots of questions:

Can super-injunctions now be broken with impunity on Twitter?

Is Twitter now unbridled? Or will it suffer a backlash from angry British judges and the powerful law firms whose expensive work it has undone?

Will super-injunctions die off for good?

Has the nature of privacy for all of us changed completely in the internet age?

Is privacy just not compatible with the internet? Should we just get used to that?

Anna Leach